West Mercia Police
|This article is outdated. (October 2010)|
|West Mercia Police|
|Logo of West Mercia Police|
|Formed||1 October 1967|
|Annual budget||£203.6 million|
|Legal personality||Governmental: Government agency|
|Operations jurisdiction*||Police area of Herefordshire, Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin and Worcestershire in the country of England, UK|
|Map of West Mercia Police's jurisdiction.|
|Size||7,428 km²/2,868 sqmi|
|Legal jurisdiction||England & Wales|
|Constituting instrument||Police Act 1996|
|Constables||2,655 (of which 288 are special constables)|
|Police Community Support Officers||277|
|Police and Crime Commissioner responsible||Bill Longmore|
|Agency executive||David Shaw QPM, Chief Constable|
|Child agency||Central Motorway Police Group, Central Counties Air Operations Unit|
|Territorial Policing Units|
|Helicopters||Single aircraft EC135 of the Central Counties Air Operations Unit|
|* Police area agency: Prescribed geographic area in the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.|
West Mercia Police, formerly known as West Mercia Constabulary, is the territorial police force responsible for policing the counties of Shropshire (including Telford and Wrekin), Herefordshire and Worcestershire in England. The force area covers 2,868 square miles (7,430 km2) making it the fourth largest police area in England and Wales. The resident population of the area is 1.19 million.
The force is divided into five divisions and represent a very wide spread of policing environments from densely populated urban conurbations on the edge of Birmingham and the city of Worcester to sparsely populated rural areas found in the rest of the force area.
As of March 2010, the force employs 2367 police officers, 277 Police Community Support Officers, 1540 police staff and 288 members of the Special Constabulary. West Mercia is Home Office force 22 and call sign YK.
In 2005 the police force was rated the best of the Home Office forces in England and Wales by the government.
The force has its headquarters in the historical manor house and grounds of Hindlip Hall on the outskirts of the city of Worcester. Its logo combines the heraldry of Worcestershire, Herefordshire and Shropshire.
The force was formed on 1 October 1967, by the merger of the Worcestershire Constabulary, Herefordshire Constabulary, Shropshire Constabulary and Worcester City Police. It lost territory to West Midlands Police when that was constituted on 1 April 1974. It changed its name from "West Mercia Constabulary" to "West Mercia Police" on 5 May 2009.
West Mercia is a partner, alongside two other forces, in the Central Motorway Police Group.
Paul West, QPM, who retired as Chief Constable on 31 July 2011 is the longest serving Chief Constable in the force's history. He was succeeded by his Deputy Chief Constable, David Shaw, who took up the senior post on 1 August 2011.
Territorial Policing Units
West Mercia Police is organised into five territorial policing units which are alphabetically coded geographically from south to north.
- C- South Worcestershire, covering Worcester, Malvern, Droitwich, Pershore and Evesham
- D- North Worcestershire, covering Kidderminster, Bromsgrove and Redditch
- E- Herefordshire
- F- Shropshire (excluding Telford & Wrekin)
- G- Telford & Wrekin
In November 2005, the government announced major reforms of policing in England and Wales, which raised the prospect of West Mercia Constabulary being in alliance with other forces in the West Midlands region.
Under final proposals made by the Home Secretary on 6 February 2006, it would merge with Staffordshire Police, Warwickshire Constabulary and West Midlands Police to form a single strategic force for the West Midlands region. This came under particular criticism from West Mercia Constabulary, especially as it was rated the best force in the country. Instead, the constabulary wishes to remain a separate force. The proposals are also unpopular with many of the local authorities in the West Mercia area.
When John Reid became Home Secretary in 2006, he put plans to merge the force – on hold, and now it seems likely that the plans might be scrapped altogether. As of 12 July 2006 the merger plans have been on hold.
The coalition government has not made any indication of re-introducing any such plans.
Operating across 3 counties, West Mercia Police maintains many stations, including:
- Worcester (C TPU HQ / Custody)
(WMP also owns Defford, formerly RAF Defford)
- Tenbury Wells
- Redditch (Custody)
- Kidderminster (D TPU HQ / Custody)
- Hereford (E TPU HQ / Custody)
- South Hereford
(*WMP also rent offices from BT in Hereford)
- Leominster (Custody)
- Shrewsbury (F TPU HQ / Custody)
- Bishop Castle
- Church Stretton
- Market Drayton
- Much Wenlock
- Telford (G TPU HQ/Custody)
- Policing Shropshire 1836–1967 by Douglas J. Elliott. Contains black and white plates, including illustration of badges as a frontispiece. Shropshire Police was amalgamated into the larger West Mercia Constabulary in 1967.
- West Mercia Police
- West Mercia Police Authority
- "Police merger plans are unveiled". BBC News. 22 December 2005. Retrieved 2 December 2005.
- "Police mergers outlined by Clarke". BBC News. 6 February 2006. Retrieved 6 February 2006.
- "Concern as police merger dropped". BBC News. 12 July 2006. Retrieved 12 July 2006.
- "The West Mercia Environment | Joint Policing Plan 2010-13 | Our Publications | About Us". Westmercia.police.uk. Retrieved 2013-10-15.
- [dead link]
- "West Mercia Police Authority". West Mercia Police Authority. 2012-11-16. Retrieved 2013-10-15.
- "New Chief Constable Appointed To Succeed Paul West". West Mercia Police. Retrieved 2013-10-16.
- Detail from a copy of Policing Shropshire published by K A F Brewin Books in 1994 with ISBN 0-947731-01-6